Named for early El Monte farmer/politician Asa Ellis (1817-1890). The Missouri-born Ellis first worked in that state as a lumberjack, then later served as sheriff and county assessor. He had at least seven children with his first wife Polly but it appears he abandoned them all after he came to California c. 1853 and married his second wife Elizabeth, with whom he had at least four more kids. Ellis and his second family left the damp lumber mills of Santa Cruz for the sunny fields of El Monte around 1862. (Ellis Lane was named by 1888.) A staunch Democrat, Ellis had a taste for politics and was elected to the L.A. County Board of Supervisors in 1864, which led to three separate stints in the CA state assembly, a term as county tax collector, then finally an appointment to head the IRS in San Francisco. Ellis retired in Fresno.